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Amidst emotional scenes, first batch of Hajis leaves for Mecca from Srinagar

Mecca is the holiest place for Muslims and around 6000 pilgrims from the union territories of Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh will fly from Srinagar till 20 June.

Statesman News Service | Jammu |

Having remained suspended for two years due to Covid-19 pandemic, the
first batch of 145 Hajis (pilgrims) to Madina in Saudi Arabia flew from the Srinagar International Airport on Sunday amidst emotional scenes.

Relatives and friends had come to see off the pilgrims at the Hajj House in Bemina.

Mecca is the holiest place for Muslims and around 6000 pilgrims from the union territories of Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh will fly from Srinagar till 20 June.

The annual Muslim pilgrimage to Saudi Arabia has restarted this year after remaining suspended for two years due to the Covid pandemic.

Lt. Governor Manoj Sinha interacted with the first batch of Haj pilgrims. He conveyed his greetings and best wishes to people undertaking the sacred pilgrimage. “I pray for successful Haj pilgrimage & peace, amity and prosperity for UT of J&K”, he tweeted.

Officials at the airport said that on 12 June there would be two daily Hajj flights and from 13 June onwards the number of daily flights will be increased to three to carry pilgrims from Srinagar to Madina.

RR Bhatnagar, advisor to the Lt. Governor, Niteshwar Sharma, principal secretary to the LG and KK Pole, divisional commissioner (Kashmir) were present at the airport to see off the pilgrims.

Authorities had made arrangements for immigration, foreign exchange, etc., at the Srinagar airport for the pilgrims.

The pilgrims first reached Hajj House where they were provided necessary documents before they boarded special buses for taking them to the Srinagar airport.

The elderly pilgrims said they will pray for peace and traditional brotherhood among Hindus, Muslims, Sikhs and people belonging to other religions in Kashmir. Executive Officer Hajj House Abdul Salam said each pilgrim was provided 2100 Saudi Riyals for their expenditure.